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Office of Sustainability

Working to improve quality of life in Philadelphia by providing environmental, equity, economic, and health benefits for all.

Office of Sustainability

What we do

The Office of Sustainability (OOS) works with partners around the City to improve quality of life in all Philadelphia neighborhoods, reduce the City’s carbon emissions, and prepare Philadelphia for a hotter, wetter future.

OOS is responsible for implementing Greenworks Philadelphia, the City’s comprehensive sustainability plan, which is made up of eight visions:

  • Accessible food and drinking water
  • Healthy outdoor and indoor air
  • Clean and efficient energy
  • Climate-prepared and carbon-neutral communities
  • Quality natural resources
  • Accessible, affordable, and safe transportation
  • Zero Waste
  • Engaged students, stewards, and workers


One Parkway Building
1515 Arch St., 13th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19102

Our programs

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  • Apr
    Webinar: Combating Climate Change Through Regulatory Relief
    4:00 pm to 5:00 pm

    Webinar: Combating Climate Change Through Regulatory Relief

    April 13, 2020
    4:00 pm to 5:00 pm, 1 hour

    As the climate change crisis becomes increasingly apparent, there are growing calls from policymakers and academics to reduce regulatory burdens on zero-carbon renewable energy development. But extreme scenarios, such as exempting renewables from most environmental and land use laws, could backfire.

    Transitioning rapidly to renewable energy will be an essential tool to slow the pace of climate change. And easing regulatory requirements for renewables will be a key part of this toolkit. But exempting renewables from land use laws could backfire due to public opposition. Further, new laws will be necessary to ensure that the rapid transition is as “just” as possible—that workers in the fossil fuel industry have the retraining they need and want; that fossil fuel-dependent communities receive funding and guidance for developing innovative, sustainable industries; and that new energy development does not perpetuate existing environmental justice issues.

    Join us for an exploration of a middle ground option, in which we develop renewable energy at a fast clip—while still addressing important social and environmental impacts. The conversation will feature Visiting Scholar Hannah Wiseman and Professor Cary Coglianese.

    About the Speaker

    Hannah Wiseman is a Kleinman Center Visiting Scholar and Attorneys' Title Professor and Associate Dean for Environmental Programs at the Florida State University College of Law. She teaches and writes in the areas of energy law, oil and gas law, environmental law, and land use. Her scholarship spans these areas, focusing on multi-level governance challenges associated with energy and other forms of development. She has published articles in the NYU Law Review, Georgetown Law Journal, Duke Law Journal (co-authored), and Environmental Science & Technology, among other journals, and she is a co-author of the textbook Energy, Economics, and the Environment and other energy books.

    About the Moderator

    Cary Coglianese is the Edward B. Shils Professor of Law and Professor of Political Science at the Carey School of Law and the Director of the Penn Program on Regulation. He specializes in the study of regulation and regulatory processes, with a particular emphasis on the empirical evaluation of alternative regulatory strategies and the role of conflict and cooperation in business-government relations. His books include Achieving Regulatory Excellence (Brookings Institution Press, 2016); Does Regulation Kill Jobs? (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2014); Regulatory Breakdown: The Crisis of Confidence of US Regulation (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2012); Import Safety: Regulatory Governance in the Global Economy (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2009); Regulation and Regulator Processes (Ashgate, 2007); and Leveraging the Private Sector: Management-Based Strategies for Improving Environmental Performance (Routledge, 2006). He has also recently written on climate change policy, public participation and transparency in federal rulemaking, the use of artificial intelligence by government agencies, and voluntary environmental programs. Coglianese was a founding editor of the peer-reviewed journal Regulation & Governance, and he founded and continues to serve as advisor to The Regulatory Review

  • Apr
    CUSP Climate City @ Science After School
    3:30 pm to 5:30 pm
    Richmond Library, 2987 Almond St, Philadelphia, PA 19134, USA

    CUSP Climate City @ Science After School

    April 22, 2020
    3:30 pm to 5:30 pm, 2 hours
    Richmond Library, 2987 Almond St, Philadelphia, PA 19134, USA

    Multiple ScienceAfter School events run simultaneously in public libraries across Philadelphia.Expect 35-150 school-aged children.

    *Freeto participate*

  • Apr
    Bio Philly- Nature, Nurture and You: Philly's Recipe for Urban Agriculture
    5:00 pm to 8:00 pm
    Dorrance H. Hamilton Building, Thomas Jefferson University, 1001 Locust St, Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA

    Bio Philly- Nature, Nurture and You: Philly's Recipe for Urban Agriculture

    April 23, 2020
    5:00 pm to 8:00 pm, 3 hours
    Dorrance H. Hamilton Building, Thomas Jefferson University, 1001 Locust St, Philadelphia, PA 19107, USA

    Register Today for bioPhilly 6!  

    April 23, 2020

    Nectar, Nurture, and You:

    Philly's Recipe for Urban Agriculture 

    Before the year 1900, farms and orchards were standard components of any urban landscape. Today, cities are unable to provide for themselves, creating a detrimental transportation footprint and serious fresh food inequities. As our climate changes, we must combine our need to sequester carbon and cool our city with our need to provide healthy local foods to all urban residents including wildlife.

    Currently, there are 42,100 vacant lots and buildings in Philadelphia, and public agencies own 14% of them, roughly 5,880.* Each vacant lot, rooftop, sidewalk, and façade offers opportunities for regenerative urban agriculture, urban orchards, and a re-wilding of the city to promote biodiversity, one microhabitat at a time. 

    As always, bioPhilly is bringing together a diverse group of experts from the fields of biophilic design, urban agriculture & agroforestry, community development and public health. Please join us to help transform our city into a beautiful and productive garden for all. 




    5:00 pm: Happy Hour and Networking with Local Vendor and Allied Organization Exhibits, Light Dinner & Drinks


    6:30 pm: Speaker Presentations begin


    Location: Dorrance H. Hamilton Building at Jefferson, 1001 Locust Street, First Floor Lobby, Philadelphia, PA 19107


    bioPhilly 6 is supported by Jefferson, MS in Sustainable Design.